Why Do Europe’s Feeder Companies Feel The Pressure?

The requirement for feeder services throughout North Europe has been greatly reduced as a result of blanked sailings from Asia, as reported by The Loadstar.

Dramatic drop

In order to return ships to owners when chartering periods are complete, feeder operators must consolidate service loops or suspend them as a result of skipped main line calls and a severe fall in transhipment volumes.

An important transhipment centre for the Baltic region, the port of Hamburg, for instance, reported yesterday...


Secondary trades suffer as carriers continue to chase the big bucks

The cellular fleet grew by 4.5% last year, to 24.97m teu, but capacity was cut on some routes as carriers re-deployed as much tonnage as they could on the more lucrative east-west tradelanes.
According to today’s Alphaliner data, the transpacific carriers deployed a further 1.3m teu of capacity on the Asia-North America trade last year than in 2020, a huge 31% increase in slots – albeit that about half the extra …

The post Secondary trades suffer as carriers continue to chase the big bucks...


South China feeder services set for decline, thanks to harsh Covid restrictions

China’s quarantine rules for seafarers are set to cause a big drop in Pearl River Delta feeder capacity in the run-up to Chinese New Year (CNY) in February.
Both ONE and Hapag-Lloyd have issued advisories warning of disruption from late December to mid-February, after feeder operators announced service suspensions due to a lack of crew.
Hapag-Lloyd said: “This suspension is caused by the Covid-19 quarantine requirement for ship crews plying between South …

The post South China feeder services...


More direct calls avoiding the UK could reduce the nation to a feeder market

High levels of congestion at major container gateways have led to declining direct port calls by mainline Asia-North Europe vessels, and increased the likelihood that the UK could become a feeder market. 
Over the past few months, the ranks of deepsea vessels omitting direct calls and unloading UK-bound cargo at north-west continental Europe gateways have swelled, leaving UK forwarders scrambling to find ways to retrieve customers’ cargo.
This has led some to lament that the country would be …



Liners’ deep pockets mean they can outbid charterers for ‘anything that floats’

Ocean carriers are using their skyrocketing profits to outbid non-operating shipowners (NOOs) for second-hand tonnage, and risk disrupting both the charter and feeder markets, it is claimed. 
The liners have been on a buying spree for containerships in the past few months, initially to support their networks in the absence of open charter tonnage, but latterly seeing  an opportunity for gains from the continued surge in vessel values. 
One S&P broker source …

The post Liners’ deep pockets mean...


Equipment and capacity squeeze sees South China cargo bookings suspended

Shipping lines have announced the temporary suspension of cargo bookings into South China next month, blaming reduced capacity from local feeder operators.
The move has prompted dismay among local forwarders who have warned customers “not to hesitate” to take any chance of booking cargo prior to Chinese New Year, which falls on 12 February.
Last week, OOCL reported a “sharp” drop in available feeder capacity, due to Covid quarantine rules affecting ship …

The post Equipment and capacity squeeze...


Shippers being ‘held to ransom’ as blanked sailings and feeder problems bite

Changes to Asia-North Europe service networks, a knock-on from carriers’ aggressive blanking programmes, are “playing havoc” with the container supply chain, according to industry stakeholders.
With both 2M and THE alliance members having suspended loops to October, carriers are merging itineraries or adding extra calls on remaining loops to cover commitments.
However, the resulting disruption for importers and exporters from changes in container pick-up and delivery points has added extra...


ONE ‘caught on the hop’ when Hapag-Lloyd ended Baltic feeder cooperation

The much-hyped feeder cooperation agreement between THE Alliance members Hapag-Lloyd and ONE has fallen victim to Covid-19.
Since October 2018, a “bilateral strategic feeder network cooperation agreement” has seen the two carriers sharing space on their respective feeder vessels.
However, as part of Hapag-Lloyd’s recently announced “triple-digit-million-dollar” cost reduction plan to mitigate the impact of Covid-19 on its balance sheet, the carrier has suspended a number of its own feeder...


Operators file EC complaint over clause that only dockers can lash boxes

The International Transport Workers’ Federation (ITF) attempts to force ships to use dockers for container lashing, which violates EU competition law, claims a Benelux law firm.
AKD, representing six European shortsea and feeder ship operators, has filed an official complaint to the European Commission.
Via the law firm, the operators have called on the EC’s competition commission to launch an official investigation into the ITF and affiliated Dutch union FNV Bondgnoten and …

The post Operators...


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